Gone with the Wind
Margaret Mitchell
Contributed by Joslyn Justiniano
Chapter 37-38
Summary

Chapter 37

On a late night, Tony Fontaine, one of the young men from the area around Tara, appears at Scarlett and Frank’s place. He has murdered supervisor Jonas Wilkerson and is on the run. Frank, together with Scarlett, agrees to help him, but his visit opens Scarlett's eyes in figuring out how the Reconstruction has changed the South. She realizes that Yankees, scallawags, and carpetbaggers are urging liberated slaves to take whatever they need. If white Southerners attempt to stop them, the administration will assist the slave, regardless of whether the slave has stolen or assaulted. While still burdened with emotions, Scarlett informs Frank that she is pregnant.

Chapter 38

Scarlett is desirous to make a profit before her pregnancy is further along, and she is prohibited to go outside. She utilizes corrupt business approaches and takes part in an exchange with the Yankees and carpetbaggers. Regardless, she loathes the Yankees; she simply needs their money. One day, a gathering of Yankee spouses stops her as she is in the vehicle with Uncle Peter, Aunt Pittypat’s previous slave now-turned -employee. The Yankee ladies say offensive things with regards to African Americans and talk about Uncle Peter as though he was not able to hear what they were saying.

Scarlett maintains her scorn for them. She can just talk to them and attempt to demonstrate that Peter has a place in her family and her world, yet Peter points the finger at Scarlett, saying she still did not do what is needed to support him. He declines to drive Scarlett from that point onwards, so she needs to drive herself. It is incredibly dangerous for Scarlett to drive alone, especially as the two factories she runs are located in regions where dangerous men, both African American and white, live in shift tents. In spite of this, Scarlett keeps on driving. Rhett starts to turn up during the many times she is driving, staying with her and — even when she does not understand it — keeping her safe. When she says to him that nobody likes her, he informs her that she has made the inexcusable sin of being extraordinary and successful in business. Although she instructs him to leave, Rhett clarifies that he is continuing to secure her as an assault on her would give the Klan motivation to regroup and the Yankees a reason launch an assault on Atlanta.

Scarlett experiences stress on a considerable level and experience serious difficulties resting. She has taken to drinking alcohol when individuals are not anywhere near, and she discovers it helps to free her mind. Originally, she intends to go home to Tara. But when she gets the information that her father has died, she decides to go sooner than she anticipated.

Analysis

It is troubling to modern readers who read through these sections to learn of people supporting the accomplishments of the Ku Klux Klan and their establishment in the society. However, as specified in the early parts of the book (see Context), Mitchell grew up hearing stories and rumors about the Confederacy, and her perceptions are likely to be in-line with the narrations that her grandfather gave to her: the old man served in the Confederate armed force.

A few people contend that Reconstruction caused all of the South’s issues. Tony Fontaine appears to voice this line of thought, saying he never loathed “niggers” until the point that they were allowed the privilege to progress toward becoming “nigger judges”. Scarlett’s calamitous vision of men running wild, ready to do what they like without any fear of reprisal, would frighten a great number of people. In any case, this is about race: these are African Americans, liberated slaves, set free by society.

Scarlett’s cooperation with the Yankee ladies demonstrate they are similarly as supremacist as any Southerner. Oblivious of Southern traditions, they consider Uncle Peter a “nigger”, which is a term no white Southerner had ever utilized on him. Scarlett, in an uncommon demonstration of sensitivity, is furious on his behalf. However, even Scarlett’s defense has a racist tinge attached to it. There is a paternalistic element to the “great” Southerners’ connections with African Americans in this book, where consider themselves to be humble and mindful of the affairs of the blacks, shepherding their poor, dumbfounded African American workers through a troublesome world — now that the Northerners have probably liberated them.

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